Heliconia — care at home
Heliconia is a herbaceous plant from the same family, grows wild in the tropics of America and Asia, so it is familiar to the warm humid climate and abundance of sun.
For the cultivation of this plant in the apartment, you need to create certain conditions.
Some species grow up to 3 m, have a pronounced pseudostable, broad oblong leaves and bright orange, red or pink wrapper leaves which can be mistaken for flowers.
The real flowers of this plant are inconspicuous or hidden.
The Heliconia cultivation
Location and lighting
Throughout the year this plant requires a good intense lighting. A small amount of it tolerates direct sunlight.
So the pot is placed on the Eastern or Western window, not the North. As undesirable stagnation of air and draughts, so you need regular exfoliation ventilation.
Heliconia as a heat-loving plant needs the support of the moderately high temperature of 22-26°C in summer and minimum of 18°C in winter.
Watering and humidity
Spring and summer provide abundant watering, giving only a little to dry the upper part of the soil. In winter, the frequency and amount of water is reduced, not allowing the soil to dry out.
Like most tropical residents, Heliconia likes high humidity. To create these conditions, preferably at least 2 times a week and spray the leaves.
You can also put the pot in a wide container with wet clay, the bottom of it it must not reach the surface of the water.
From spring to autumn the plant monthly fed complex fertilizers. In winter, stop fertilizing completely.
Transplantation and propagation
Repot every spring using more voluminous and wide pot. For the transplant to take, the substrate of such a composition: 2 parts leaf earth, 1 part humus, sod of earth and sand, be sure to provide good drainage.
One of the ways of reproduction – seeds. Them for a few days soaked in hot water, then shallow (no more than 2 cm) are planted in a mixture of peat and sand, and germinated under cover at 25°C. seeds Germinate in about 4 months.
Heliconia is also propagated by root suckers. They are separated from the root system and planted in pots with moist soil, keeping them first in the shade.
Pests and fight with them
This plant is not prone to pest attacks. However, sometimes on its leaves appear brown patches is the scale insects that cause yellowing and leaf drop.
The leaves and stems, wipe with a soapy sponge and treated with actellic. If the plant appear on the web, this means that it was infested with spider mites. Get rid of him, wiping the stems and leaves with soapy sponge and rinsing in the shower.